Lighthouse1: Jeff Young, President & CEO

by HCE Exchange on April 1, 2011

After only about five years in business, Lighthouse1 served just under 2 million consumers last year and processed nearly $1.3 billion in claims. What Lighthouse1 provides, in short, is a web-based portal in which consumer driven healthcare accounts can be accessed and managed. Flexible spending accounts, health retirement arrangements and health savings accounts are among the solutions Lighthouse1 OnDemand™ delivers.

“ Lighthouse1 OnDemand  is available 365 days a year, 24 hours a day,” says Jeff Young, President and CEO of the organization. “We offer a great electronic medium for employers, human resource professionals, administrators and consumers to manage all their consumer driven healthcare needs in one place.”

Lighthouse1 has two offices, one in Minneapolis, Minnesota and the other in Fargo, North Dakota. The company has over 100 team members who serve millions of consumers through their product and service offerings.

“Our goal is to simplify the business of healthcare, and we are directly doing that through the use of technology and service innovation” adds Young.

Simplifying the Business of Healthcare

Many Lighthouse1 team members are software designers and programmers that have come from Microsoft and other leading technology and healthcare organizations. Having developers who are experts in the user-interface aspect of building software is also a key.

Young himself was a Vice President in sales and marketing for Microsoft for eight years before moving to Lighthouse1.

“When you think about what makes healthcare difficult and costly, a lot of times it’s because it is not as simple as it needs to be.  Having a very easy-to-use interface available on the web means you do not  need to install software, and you don’t need to have training or read spec manuals—you just log in and process your transactions very quickly,” states Young.

“As the world thinks about healthcare costs rising, our job is to make healthcare costs go down and make the business of managing healthcare easier.”

Lighthouse1 creates user-friendly software that allows multiple consumer driven healthcare plans to be managed through a single, easy-to-understand interface. Individual brokers, banks, and companies that support in these consumer plans can then brand the Lighthouse1 interface with their own logos and marketing.

The Typical Lighthouse1 Client

The company’s client profile is very diverse. At least half dozen Lighthouse1 clients are Fortune top 50 companies, among the largest and most complex companies in the world. They also have partners that focus on small businesses, fewer than 25 employees with health plans they administrate themselves. They support approximately 20,000 employers, largest to smallest, in total.

Young stated, “one thing that really attracted him to Lighthouse1 was being able to work with a robust partner community,” He received a great deal of satisfaction out of building business partnerships with a channel and together delivering great solutions during his twenty years with Microsoft/Great Plains – this is the same direction Lighthouse1 has taken. Lighthouse1 has a network of over 50 administrative partners around the U.S. today, including payroll processors, medical administrators, banks and third party administrators.  Together they are focused on driving down the cost of healthcare while delivering superior service for their employers and consumers.

Investments in Benchmarking and Technology

Last year Lighthouse1 invested time and energy in going through all transactions and benchmarking the key business processes their partners and employers run. “We went through and determined, for every form you fill, how effective you are compared to millions of other consumers,” Young says. “It was extremely powerful for our partners to be able to walk through this process and figure out where they could save money and where they could improve employer and consumer satisfaction.”

The company has found that it has also been a great tool for attracting new partners. Now potential partners can look at exactly how they do business today and see how an average Lighthouse1 partner performs in the system.

Technology, of course, is an ongoing investment. As a company, they focus on delivering innovation in a way that drives their software. “That’s maybe one of the most important things that we do,” says Young. “We have great people on our team, and we have one job; that’s helping our partners be successful. We have technical account managers who make sure our partners are successful in keeping their customers happy, while Partner Growth Managers are focused on helping them grow.”

“We really invest in partners both for growth and for technical exploits. I think this is one of our biggest differentiators. When we think about innovation, we think of innovation for technology and also for our partner’s success.”

Making an Impact on Healthcare

“We’ve have a super team; they are high energy and they are passionate,” says Young. “The integrity our team has with our partners, is the same integrity we drive across our company, it is the bedrock of our organization. We work very hard on innovation, and we have a deep focus on having strong relationships with our partners, our customers and our employers. When we do this well, everyone is successful.”

-by T.M. Simmons

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